Ohiyo!

Tonight we’re going to answer a piece of reader email that came in earlier today. This one is from Jim and he’s got a question for the Sensei:

“Treadmill “Sensei”,

After much research including your site, I have come down to two ellipticals at the same price ($1299). First, the Sole Fitness E35, the other is the SportsArt 803. I have seen/tired the 803 but only read abou the E35. Any recommendations?

Most Sincerely, Jim”

Jim:

Thank you for your note. You’ve actually picked two really good machines. We work on ellipticals every day here at the DOJO and neither one of those brands come in very often — which is a great sign of quality! Plus, they both have similar 5 year part warranties and decent labor ones as well (1 year on the SportsArt and 2 on the Sole).

The SportsArt units are great for people who have worked out with Precor units at the gyms and want something with a similar feel (although without the “ramp” technology the Precors are famous for). The reason people like the SportsArt ellpticals is because they have a great adjustable stride on them. The downside is they have static pedals so your feet might start to fall asleep during long workouts.

The Soles are great machines all the way around. But, it is tough to purchase something you haven’t been on. If you have a Dick’s Sporting Good or something similar in the area you might be able to find the Spirit XE150 to try out. It is the exact same unit as the Sole E35 and usually about $200 cheaper because you are cutting out the middle man (Sole buys their machines from Spirit, re-labels and resells them at a mark-up).

So, in a round about way, I’d say if you liked the feel of the SportsArt 803, it is a good, solid machine. However, it might be worth trying to track down a Spirit or Sole locally to try out because they are fantastic, comfortable machines.

Thanks again for your note and I hope I helped…I tend to ramble a bit about the equipment. Take care.

-The Treadmill Sensei
http://www.treadmillsensei.com